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Going Organic: Your Child Deserves It

Organic-Baby-Food

By Lisa Guy, Naturopath and Homeopath.

It’s important to give children the very best start in life and that involves giving them the best quality, nutrient-dense food you can. Children need the best possible nutrition if they are to fulfill their potential both physically and emotionally.

Natural, fresh foods, free from chemicals, preservatives and additives should make up the majority of your child’s diet.

Organic produce is grown without the use of synthetic fertilizers, pesticides or herbicides. All of these have questionable effects on human health if they remain in the foods we ultimately eat. Therefore, organic manufacturers take their nutritional responsibilities very seriously, having strict standards at all levels of production and supply. The producers of organic products have a special consideration for the environment, caring for the soil, and work in harmony with nature to deliver a natural product that is free from chemicals. Organic products must be free from any artificial additives, flavourings, colourings, preservatives, hydrogenated fats or genetically modified ingredients.

ARTIFICIAL ADDITIVES:

Many processed or commercial foods contain a vast number of additives in the form of chemical preservatives, antioxidants, stabilisers, thickeners, flavour enhancers and colourings. A UK Food Commission survey showed that 38% of children’s food contained additives in products that were likely to form a large part of their diets (not including soft drinks, confectionery, chocolate and crisps). In Australia there are hundreds of artificial additives added to processed foods.

As has been the modern trend, children’s consumption of processed and fast food has gathered pace and therefore so too has their intake of chemical additives.

HERBICIDES AND PESTICIDES:

Over 170 pesticides, herbicides and fertilizers are routinely sprayed on commercially grown crops.

Their toxic residues can be found in a variety of the foods children frequently consume. Some of these foods have been found to contain up to 14 different pesticide residues.3 Several kinds of fertilizers also contain toxic heavy metals (mercury, lead, aluminium) that enter the soil and are absorbed and retained by these plant crops.4

There is a substantial body of evidence that suggests residues left in food by pesticides and other chemicals can be harmful to humans. Research has demonstrated that reduced immune resistance and reproductive function is associated with consumption of commercially versus organically grown produce.

The literature also shows that excessive exposure to pesticide residues and the like can potentially disrupt the growth and development of your child’s developing nervous and reproductive systems. As these continue to develop, until around 18 years of age, this has obvious implications for our kids and the diets they should be consuming.

ANTIBIOTICS:

Also of relevance to children’s health is the issue of antibiotic usage in livestock farming. Most nonorganic livestock are given antibiotics and other drugs on a regular basis to maximize meat and egg production. There is growing evidence to suggest the long-term consumption of low levels of antibiotics has a detrimental effect on the development of children’s immune function.

By choosing certified organic meats, poultry and eggs you can feel reassured that they will be free from antibiotics and their feed was free from pesticides, herbicides and genetic modification.

For more info, keep reading “Going Organic

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Apr 23, 2010 | Category: Food and Nutrition, Health and Beauty | Comments: none | Tags: , , , ,

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